I think it’s easy to get caught up in a romanticized idea of what it means to reinvent yourself. We think of it as a complete overhaul, adopting an entirely new persona to fit in, stand out, or become a better person. We see it all the time in movies; the epic makeover scene that transforms a character into a lovable prep (Clueless), a teen rebel (Thirteen), a Plastic (Mean Girls), and countless others that have a permanent pillar in teen narratives. Some are sincere, some work as a cautionary tale, but one thing many of them have in common is that they’re pretty unrealistic. Someone’s personality doesn’t change overnight. Most of our biggest changes aren’t even planned, they just…happen.
But there’s nothing wrong with wanting a fresh start, especially when a new school year is coming up. You don’t have to do that by finding a new crew of friends and scoring an entirely new wardrobe, you can do it in little ways that make you feel motivated to do things a little differently. Whether it’s with a new hairstyle or clearing out your tech, check out these seven realistic ways to reinvent yourself for the new school year.
Do A Tech CleanupI'm a straight up tech hoarder, and my cell phone is full of more screenshots than I care to admit to, and my laptop has so many documents scattered across the desktop. If this sounds familiar, take a few days to do a bit of a tech cleanup. Delete photos, throw old files into a folder, get rid of some music you don't really listen to from your phone, and back up necessary documents. And after all of that, buy a new cell phone case to celebrate! Hell, why not? Dolls Kill
Edit Your Closet Before Going On A Shopping SpreeI know, I know, getting new clothes is probably one of the best things about back to school shopping. But if you feel like you have nothing to wear, or that you're in a style slump, Before you hit those last summer/early fall sales, edit your closet. Throw out clothes you never wear anymore and find out ways to repurpose your old favorites. I did just that last weekend and it felt great! You might just be able to remix them to create a whole new look that feels more you. Instagram/Offbeatorbit
Do Something With Your Look That You've Been Meaning To Try For A WhileHave you been dying to shave a part of your head, or rock some box braids, or dye your hair? Give it a go! What better time to show it off than the first day of school? Of course, if you want to do something a little less permanent, that's fine too. Have you been meaning to dabble in wearing more makeup? Buy some lipstick and some eyeliner and see how it goes. Don't be afraid to make a splash when it comes to your look. Empire Records
Get A Head Start On Some Good HabitsYou can try to start becoming more organized on the first day of school, but it's a lot harder to stick with it for the long run if you're suddenly overwhelmed by school stressors. A couple of weeks before school starts, get into some better habits. Have your outfit planned for the next day, pack a lunch the night before, buy a planner and your necessary school supplies, and start going to bed before 1 AM. When you give yourself time to adapt to better habits, it'll be easier to stick to. Bando.com
Clean Your RoomIt's amazing how much more fitting a fresh start can be when you have a fresh bedroom to chill in. It doesn't have to be sparkling, but pick up your clothes from the floor, do some laundry, and clear off your desk. Maybe do a little bit of redecorating, too. Throw a new poster onto your wall or place a succulent on your window sill. Little things will make a big difference. Ghost World
Plan More Events To Go ToDo you think your social life needs a revamp? Don't assume that you're stuck. Look up some local gigs and see what their calendar is looking like; invite a friend and have fun. Pay attention to the school's sports schedule and go to a basketball game; check out your theater friend's play. You have the power, dude, get out there! My Mad Fat Diary
Have A Pampering DayGet ready for the first day of school by treating yourself! Get a mani-pedi and your eyebrows threaded (if you're into that). Buy a new lipstick. Pick up a new book or magazine. Get your hair done. Buy a bath bomb from Lush! Whatever it is that makes you feel good, spend a day doing just that. It'll get you in the mood for a fresh start. Clueless
What do you plan to change about yourself for the school year? Tell us in the comments!